A TERRIFIED dad took his 21-month-old son to hospital for emergency treatment after he chewed potentially fatal drugs pushed through the family’s letterbox by mistake.
Mohammed Naeem returned home to find toddler Zubayr pushing two of the chocolate-coloured tablets, which should have been delivered to a diabetic neighbour by a local pharmacist, into his mouth in the hallway.
His wife Yasmin, cooking in the kitchen of their Blackburn home, had been keeping an eye on the youngster and was totally unaware the drugs had been posted through the letterbox.
Mr Naeem rang the NHS 111 line and was told to take his son to A&E at Royal Blackburn Hospital. Zubayr was kept in overnight.
Three days later, Mr Naeem took his son to his GP for a check-up after he carried on crying and seemed distressed.
The 37-year-old CCTV installer of Bromley Street, Wensley Fold, said: “I was really scared. “He could have died. This should never have happened.
“They should never have just pushed such dangerous drugs through a letterbox instead of handing them to someone.
“These pills looked just like chocolates and my son was far too young to know not to eat them.”
Mr Naeem is now taking legal advice and Riaz Pharmacy in Randal Street, which arranged for the delivery, said it had suspended a driver.
Lancashire Telegraph doctor Tom Smith said: “If the parents and the hospital had not acted quickly these drugs would probably have killed him.’’
He said the pills, called trajenta, lower blood sugar over time and, in the case of a child under two, would have caused a coma and probable death if swallowed and no antidote or sugar was administered swiftly.
Pharmacy manager Riaz Hinglotowala said: “This issue is currently under investigation to find out exactly what happened.
“These drugs should not have been pushed through a letterbox. “Our policy is to give them to an individual and if no-one is present leave a note asking them to ring us to arrange delivery. “The driver has been suspended.”
Father-of-four Mr Naeem said: “I had been in London to meet a friend and rang my wife on my way home to ask her to make me a curry.
“She was in the kitchen cooking my dinner and keeping an eye on Zubayr who was in the hall playing safely with his toys.
“I came home and saw him chewing two chocolate-coloured pills. I grabbed them and got them out of his mouth and then saw the packet. I was really frightened and my wife was just crying.
“At once I rang 111 and they told me to get him to the emergency department of the hospital immediately and offered to send an ambulance.
“They took him immediately and then kept till 7am the following morning. They were clearly very worried.
“He kept on crying and I took him to our GP three days later who gave him the all clear.
“We are very lucky. He could have died if we had not seen him do it, got the pills out and taken him to hospital where they were fantastic.
“If everyone hadn’t acted quickly, it would have had serious consequences. I have CCTV of the man delivering the pills.
“I am taking legal advice. I want something done so this cannot happen again and my neighbour is not left without his life-saving pills.”
A spokesman for the General Pharmaceutical Council said: “All pharmacies are required to meet our standards for registered pharmacies, which include supplying medicines and medical devices safely.
“The GPhC sets out the standards of conduct, ethics and performance that pharmacy professionals must follow. A pharmacy professional’s conduct will be judged against these standards and failure to comply could put their registration at risk.”